Dublin’s ‘Backstreet Abortionists’ (1930s – 1950s)


Come Here To Me!

In a very grim way, Mamie Cadden (1891 -1959) found her way into the folklore of Dublin city. Dublin’s most infamous ‘backstreet abortionist’, her name was almost synonymous with evil in the city for a generation, and she emerges in several memoirs of Dublin in the mid-twentieth century. Edna O’Brien remembered hearing of Cadden, “to some an angel of deliverance, to others a murderer, and who would die, declared insane, in a lunatic asylum in Dundrum.”

MamieCadden.jpg Mamie Cadden, photographed following one of several arrests.

Yet Mamie Cadden, whose story has inspired books (Ray Kavanagh’s Mamie Cadden: Backstreet Abortionist) and documentaries was just one part of a much bigger tale. In the Dublin of her time, there were many others who emerged as so-called ‘backstreet abortionists’, and across the city men and women like Cadden offered to provide terminations to women who found themselves in crisis pregnancies.

In 1941, The…

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Irish company in asset probe on Christian Brothers


The Ragged Wagon

Sunday, December 09, 2001

Irish company in asset probe on Christian Brothers
Sunday, December 02, 2001 By Emily O’Reilly

The liquidator is expected to ask an Irish court to allow him to investigate the company, Richmond Newstreet. Dublin-based Des Lamont heads up L and P Financial Trustees Ltd, which acts as secretary to the company and shares an address in Clonskeagh in Dublin. Lamont helped negotiate the controversial £20 million loan by beef baron Larry Goodman to Tipperary farmer Joe Kenny in 1990. A lengthy legal dispute arose from the Goodman/Kenny transaction. According to David Wingfield, lawyer to the Canadian liquidators, Richmond was set up in 1994 as an off-shore trust for the Christian Brothers.

Two years later, in 1996, the court appointed a liquidator to the Christian Brothers in Canada in order to release assets to pay massive compensation claims to sexual and physical abuse victims of the Brothers…

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Criminal Assets Bureau VS 18 Religious Orders?


The Ragged Wagon

Eighteen groups that were involved with the running of residential institutions for children investigated by the Ryan commission have refused to contribute to the €1.36 billion costs incurred by the State in compensating people who had been abused in the institutions.  Source

Why is this thing dragging on? Why can’t the Criminal Assets Bureau step in?  Has anyone in the present government actually read the Final Report of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse? And if they have read it, have they read it out loud to these Religious Congregations? Here’s a few of their findings with my own comments added:

A climate of fear, created by pervasive, excessive and arbitrary punishment, permeated most of the institutions and all those run for boys. Children lived with the daily terror of not knowing where the next beating was coming from. Seeing or hearing other children being beaten was a frightening…

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The Insolence of a Child


The Ragged Wagon

A DAY IN THE LIFE 1958 : There is nothing these nuns hate more than the insolence of a child. Over their CHILD GULAG they had a Latin phrase which translated meant: I WILL TEACH YOU THE FEAR OF THE LORD. Of course all that Latin bullshit was beyond me as a five year old – well most of it – the bit that I could grasp told me that this Lord was a bullshit artist. I mean how could a child be expected to say a prayer before a meal which consisted of slop – green mash, GREEN FUCKING MASH!!! and these fucking nuns wanted me to say THANKS TO THE LORD for it!!!

NO WAY – I’d quickly say PRAYERS for the food them fucking nuns were having but not for the slimy slop THEY were dishing up to me. At my first opportunity I broke into their…

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“I was able to engage and work on vital negotiations that I believe have changed for better the history of Ireland forever, and for good” Martin McGuinness


Patricia Devlin

Martin-McGuinness-007 Martin McGuinness

Martin McGuinness 1950 – 2017

News broke shortly after 7am today that Martin McGuinness, former IRA leader turned peacemaker, had passed away.

The 66-year-old Irish republican died after a short illness in Derry’s Altnagelvin hospital surrounded by his family. He had a rare genetic disease caused by deposits of abnormal protein – amyloid – in tissues and organs.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Martin McGuinness in 2013, weeks after he announced his decision to step down from his role as MP for Mid-Ulster.

At the time I was working for a local newspaper with a circulation of around seven – maybe even eight – thousand. It really served him very little to speak with me, however he made the time because he said he owed a lot to the people of South Derry and East Tyrone who he emphasised made it possible for him to…

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60th Anniversary of Ordination of Fr Niall Molloy on 17/March/1957

Magdalena Laundry by John Gibbs


Patricia Devlin

rr mag11 by Rachael Romero

Last week I was contacted by an Irish composer called John Gibbs. John, who is originally from Dublin but living in Frankfurt, has written a number of beautiful, touching and heart rendering songs based on the Magdalene and mother and baby institution scandal here in Ireland. His songs are unlike any I have ever heard before.

After speaking with him on Friday I found out he is actually working on a project in tribute to the women and children who found themselves inside those institutions. And he has been working very closely with inspirational campaigner and researcher Catherine Corless who uncovered the Tuam baby scandal.

He sent me a number of tracks that are set to be included in the project (which won’t be completed until May) including one titled Magdalena Laundry. The song really captures the inescapable pain endured by many women and children enslaved in…

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ENCOURAGECHANGE.: Justine McCarthy – "TDs have their hundred-grand salaries and their bottomless pit of perks for a job that takes up 100 days. They are spoilt"


Oconnellpadd13's Blog

ENCOURAGECHANGE.: Justine McCarthy – “TDs have their hundred-grand salaries and their bottomless pit of perks for a job that takes up 100 days. They are spoilt”: ” “The Proclamation”IF THIS RECESSION HAS AFFECTED YOU OR YOUR FAMILY ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO HAD TO EMIGRATE, AND YOU ALSO FEEL STRONGLY THERE IS A NEED TO CHANGE OUR CONSTITUTION TO SUIT THE TIMES, AND ENSHRINE THE ASPIRATIONS OF THE IRISH PROCLAMATION INTO A NEW CONSTITUTION .CONTACT PAUL O CONNELL AT LEICESTER UNIVERSITY UK.”?

‘via Blog this’

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The Other Proclamation.


Come Here To Me!

150 years ago today, the Fenian Rising commenced.

Less than ten years after the founding of the Fenian Brotherhood in New York and the Irish Republican Brotherhood in Dublin, armed men assembled across Dublin and in other parts of the country. The insurrection is synonymous with Tallaght, where thousands of Fenians mobilised for action, but there were outbreaks of violence in other places too. At Stepaside and Glencullen, men led by the American Civil War veteran Patrick Lennon carried a green flag into battle emblazoned with the words ‘REMEMBER EMMET’.

The insurrection quickly collapsed; William Domville Handcock, a Tallaght landowner and Magistrate for County Dublin, wrote dismissively of “the Fenian Battle of Tallaght as it was called, though it was unworthy of the name.” Even some later separatists dismissed what occurred in 1867; Bulmer Hobson, the maverick IRB organiser who would do so much to revitalise the Fenian movement in…

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Historical talk on Peter Graham (1946-71)


Come Here To Me!

This Saturday sees a historical public meeting on the life of Dublin-born Trotskyist and Saor Éire activist Peter Graham. He was tortured and shot dead in a flat off Stephen’s Green on 25 October 1971 aged 26. A cloud of mystery, silence and betrayal still hangs over the incident to this day.

The talk will be chaired by Alan MacSimoin (Stoneybatter & Smithfield People’s History Project) and the main speaker will be historian Rayner O’Connor Lysaght who was a close friend of Graham’s. It takes place at 4.30pm in The Cobblestone pub, Dublin 7.

Peter Graham pictured in The Irish Times (05 Dec 1968) Peter Graham pictured in The Irish Times (05 Dec 1968)

Growing up in the Liberties at 46 Reginald Street, Graham attended Bolton St. College of Technology and later worked as an electrician within Córas Iompair Éireann (CIÉ) where he was a shop-steward for the Electrical Trade Union.

A founding member of the Young Socialists, he…

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